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Clarkstown Police Awarded 3.4% Pay Raises For Both 2009 and 2010

Preliminary talks under way for new contract covering 2011 and beyond.

A state arbitrator has awarded Clarkstown police officers a two-year package of raises that hikes salaries by 3.4 percent for 2009 and 3.4 percent for 2010.

The award, distributed to town officials and leaders of the Clarkstown Policemen's Benevolent Association today, clears the way for the two sides to work on a new contract covering 2011 and beyond.

Clarkstown PBA president David Trois said he and members of the union are happy the lengthy arbitration is completed. PBA and town officials have been expecting a decision in the labor dispute for more than nine months.

The PBA contract went to binding arbitration through the state's Public Employee Relations Board after the two sides reached a statelmate in negotiations. The union has sought 5 percent annual raises, while the town was seeking a contract with no raises.

Trois said the award also include a new option for town police officers to place themselves under a spouce's health insurance plan instead of the town's plan if they wish.

"We're grateful the process has ended. The award was long overdue. It was a very lenghty process," said Trois, who noted that PBA members were briefed on the arbitration award today.

Although Town Board members were hoping for lower pay increases in the arbitration award, Trois said the overall negotiation and arbitration process was conducted in a professional manner without any animosity.

Trois noted that throughout the process, town police officers maintained their professionalism and did not let the contract matter affect their work.

Town Board members, who were reviewing the arbitration award today, said they were disappointed by the decision and were concerned it did not reflect the realities of the economy.

The official record for the arbitration process closed last fall. At the time, the most recent police contract award involved the Town of Ramapo, where police officers received 4 percent annual raises. Clarkstown town officials tried to have the official record of the arbitration re-opened to reflect recent police contracts with lower salary increases in Stony Point and Haverstraw.

The bid to re-open the record was rejected by the arbitrator.

Clarkstown has a 159-member police department. The 2010 Clarkstown salaray schedule shows that basic salaries for police officers range from $72,200 to $131,160. Those figures do not include higher-ranking, higher-paid police department supervisors.

 

Mike Hirsch July 02, 2011 at 12:52 AM
A poor decision by a poor panel of arbitrators. If Gromack had the stones, he'd cut the police department budget by an equal amount, thereby ensuring that the town and it's citizen/taxpayers would not feel the monetary effect of this very poor decision. Score: PBA attorneys 268, Town attorneys 0
Scotty July 02, 2011 at 03:26 AM
Wah wah ! Listen, pay for what you need. Until you walk in those shoes, you can't understand. But I bet the next time someone is being assaulted, you want jet speed help and forget what it cost .
Joe July 02, 2011 at 11:11 AM
First of all Mr. Hirsch, It's AN arbitrator, not a panel. Someone who fancies himself such a "concerned taxpayer" may know that. Secondly, I agree with you.... You should live in a community where the Supervisor has cut the police budget in half so that its citizen/taxpayers would not feel the monetary effect". That community is called Spring Valley. How about you put your money where your mouth is and move up to the hill?
Mike Hirsch July 02, 2011 at 12:23 PM
Joe, this arbitration award was decided by a panel of three arbitrators, which I believe is required by the PERB rules. Spring Valley's police force has not been cut, but there is a town in NJ that did cut it's force 25% because of PBA inflexibility. It is a safe town like Clarkstown. Their crime rate has not gone up. If you want, I can send you the information.
Mike Hirsch July 02, 2011 at 12:36 PM
I don't need the highest paid police force in the state. The AVERAGE Clarkstown cop makes $150,000/year and gets 15 paid WEEKS off. My gripe is not with the cops. It is with the town government that has allowed this to happen over the past 30 years. The town attorneys are hopelessly outclassed by the PBA attorneys.
Tom July 02, 2011 at 01:01 PM
These cops are over paid.
WILLY LOPEZ July 02, 2011 at 01:57 PM
JET SPEED HELP? LOL....MORE THAN HALF OF THE CLOWNS ARE OUT OF SHAPE AND CANT EVEN APREHEND A SUSPECT IF THEY HAD TO.
Dawn Lafasciano July 02, 2011 at 02:07 PM
That last comment by Willy Lopez is very rude and uncalled for. You should be ashamed or are you just jealous?
Sarah Chauncey July 02, 2011 at 02:32 PM
So the schools are facing a 2% tax cap. We are cutting teachers in the county. We are working with out teacher unions to address the sorry state of our economy. The teachers have stepped up to the plate. Why haven't our town officials done the same. I'll tell you why -- school budgets are the only budgets put up for a community vote -- and rightly so. The community should vote on the town budget.
Mike Hirsch July 02, 2011 at 03:03 PM
The AVERAGE Clarkstown cop makes $150,000/year and gets 75 paid days off/year. My gripe is not with the cops. It is with the town administration who let this happen over the past 30 years. The town attorneys are hopelessly outclassed by the PBA attorneys, and the professional politicians who control our town just don't get it.
RJ July 02, 2011 at 03:26 PM
What about health insurance and pensions? Seems the problem with most unions is not the annual salaries but the "forever" benefits we must pay. Have cops,teachers & town officials be responsible for investing part of their salary in their own retirement and contribute to the high cost of health insurance. After they retire, they have a nice nest egg that they have grown and will obtain their own health insurance. This will keep the cost to taxpayers down. And, newsflash, this is how most non-union working America does it and it seems to work just fine.
Matt Foley July 03, 2011 at 03:24 AM
Quick poll: How many of you have been shot at while at work in the past few years? How many of you work at 2AM? How many of you work most holidays away from your families? How many of you go to work on a given day and have no idea what you're going to have to face during your tour? How many of you commit your lives to protecting other people while putting your own life on the line? How many of you have to wear a bullet resistant vest during your work day? Answer: Probably not many of you, if any at all, unless you're also a police officer. Granted, we signed up for all this when we joined up. But we did it with the desire and courage to protect everyone, including you griping morons who say we get paid too much. When we get to a call, we don't ask if you're one of those ungrateful bloggers who hate us, we ask what we can do for you, how can we help you, what do you need.
Matt Foley July 03, 2011 at 03:25 AM
When we joined up, we realized that we had a fairly secure job that will support us in good times and bad. Well, times might be bad now for some of you, but why does it need to be bad for us too? We do our job the same no matter what the economy does. Yes we have a strong union. Yes, we have a great Town that supports our department so that we can do our job at its best. And yes, we are among the highest paid in the state. To be honest, every cop who does this job, no matter where, deserves to be paid at rates equal to ours. We don't bitch about having to go into squalor to save someone. We don't care that someone might be less than fortunate when they need our help. We give our best to everyone every minute of every day. And yes, we DO realize that taxes and expenses are tough for all nowadays. But we, too, are taxpayers and citizens and neighbors. We just happened to choose a profession that gave us security in our job in exchange for doing a job that not many of you could handle or want to handle on a daily basis. And yes, I am a proud member of the Clarkstown Police Department. I urge everyone of you who is voicing displeasure with this article to go up to the next CPD officer you see and tell him or her personally what you said here. You'll actually be surprised how well you'll be treated. We do understand your concerns.
Phil Costa July 03, 2011 at 04:50 AM
Well said Mr. Foley. Your comments ring true and hit home. I am a retired Clarkstown Officer who served for almost 29 yrs. It is a service I am very proud of, and I still continue to help my community as a Volunteer Firefighter, and have done so since 1971. Yes, the property taxes are high, and I pay them also. We have all made our own choices, mine was to join the CPD. I took the test, worked hard and made the grade. That chance is open to ALL. Give it a shot and make the grade. My late father was retired NYPD, and my respect for the Department and its Members is paramount. The fact that NYC underpays its officers should not be used to knock the members of CPD. It is fact that many CPD officers are former NYPD members, and were able to score high enough to transfer. Like Officers everyplace, I have seen death, bad accidents, shootings, stabings, and mayhem. Clarkstown is safe-but it is not Mayberry RFD. Don't forget the Brinks Robbery, the killing of Mrs. Nagle, the shooting and stabing of CPD Officers and so much more.
Phil Costa July 03, 2011 at 04:51 AM
We have all moved to Clarkstown for many reasons. Schools and public safety are usually at the top of the list. Thats a fact thats hard to dispute. Any Cop in America will tell you that " We don't get paid for what we do, but for what we might have to do." Think about it! Most Officers killed in the line of duty are from small towns, often smaller than Clarkstown. Please check the Officer Down Memorial Page at http://www.odmp.org. for more info. Let's move on and support the Men and Women of CPD, and law enforcement nationwide.
Ken McQuade July 03, 2011 at 01:04 PM
God Bless the Men the Woman and all the K-9's at station 201.
riss1218 July 04, 2011 at 08:15 AM
Quick poll for you Matt Foley... How many of you VOLUNTARILY run into a burning building. How many of you VOLUNTARILY go to a call at 2AM. How many of you go to a call EVERY SINGLE HOLIDAY away from your families. How many of you never know if your going to make it out a burning building. Probably none of you unless your a VOLUNTEER FIREMAN. They are the hero’s of Rockland that don’t get paid for what they do because they want to do a service to our community just because it is rewarding to give back. They are the ones who leave their families whenever that pager goes off not knowing what to expect once arrived at the call.
riss1218 July 04, 2011 at 08:15 AM
Clarkstown cops get paid WAY TOO MUCH to break up house parties and pull people over for going 5 mph over the speed limit or talking on their cell phone, yet 98% of the time you are all on your cell phones. You guys think that just because you are cops you are dismissed from the law, you should all take a lesson in PRACTICE WHAT YOU PREACH. Everytime you get an actual call, like when a mysterious man in all black with a bag was walking on my property in the middle of the night and then ran off into the woods, you don’t do anything. But when 17 and 18 year old Jonny and Susie are having their friends over because they graduated high school, you come and break it up. Get a grip on reality people, you all think you are above the law and above everyone else in this town. I think it’s funny because if we paid all our VOLUNTEER fire departments and ambulance corps., this town would be in such severe debt it wouldnt be funny, NO ONE would be able to afford the taxes. Your volunteers do more on a daily basis then you do in one year.
amy durbin July 04, 2011 at 11:20 AM
Joe, it is a panel of 3 arbitrators. Someone who wants other people who have opinions that differ from yours to move should know that
amy durbin July 04, 2011 at 11:22 AM
Are you saying that the NYPD who get less than half CPD salary don't show up? Are you saying that if the CPD got a 0% raise (like I have for the past 3 years) that they wouldn't show up at the same speed that they show up now?
BenRound July 04, 2011 at 01:26 PM
There is no one by the name "Matt Foley" working in Clarkstown.
riss1218 July 04, 2011 at 03:58 PM
Awww what you guys got mad at me comment and removed it?!?! AWWW BOO HOO. It’s the truth, they sit around and do NOTHING and get paid for it. Pay the ones who actually do something on an every day basis and get no dollar amount what so ever for it. This town and this county are so beyond corrupt its ridiculous. I can’t wait to move out of this backwards run town.
Percy Marvelous July 09, 2011 at 06:05 AM
The Clarkstown Police Department is highly educated, highly trained, and highly motivated. It is by far the best police agency in the county. CPD ranks as one of the best police agencies of its size in the country. When you call an ambulance it is the CPD who will invariably arrive first. When you have a situation wherein everyone else is running away you will find CPD officers running towards that situation. While it is true that Clarkstown is not Mayberry you will find it pretty damn close in reality and that is due to the hard work and vigilance of the CPD!
amy durbin July 09, 2011 at 07:34 AM
Are you saying that they wouldn't be so great if they didn't get the 3.4%, that they would stop running towards situations? Are you saying that at less than 1/2 the salary, the NYPD is not all those things and more? Are you saying that our volunteer firemen, who get no salary, are not those things and more? Your argument makes no sense.
Percy Marvelous July 09, 2011 at 08:28 AM
Amy, I said nothing concerning a 3.4 pay pay increase in my post. Some parts of the NYPD are good but I would have to say the present quality of the force in general is somwhat lacking. You pay people crap and that is what you will generally get. I am not sure what firemen have to do with police matters. As they are not referenced in my post I suppose you are making an argument about them. I suppose my argument makes no sense as I am not presenting one. So I suppose that your rather interesting suppositions, which essentially in and of themselves make no sense, form the non sequiter that is your conclusion. By the by, if no firemen volunteer then we shall pay for a fire service through taxation. Paramedics are being paid now for the ambulance response they provide. My statement is declarative in nature if you care to read it again. Amy, are you implying that the CPD Officers should not get a raise? Are you implying that we should hire paid firefighters? Please elaborate further on just what you wish to argue abou!;-)
amy durbin July 09, 2011 at 10:44 AM
I am not implying that the CPD officers should not get a raise, I thought I was clear about it. My point about our volunteer firefighters is in response to your comment about the CPD running towards dangerous situations. So do our firefighters and they get paid nothing.
riss1218 July 09, 2011 at 02:36 PM
Actually Mr. Percy, Paramedics do NOT get paid, hence all the counties VOLUNTEER ambulance services such as Congers-Valley Cottage, Orangetown, New City, Hillcrest, Monsey and more. If you are going to make an argument about that please be correct. If you want people running towards a situation, take a look at our Volunteer Firemen who never know if they will make it home after they get a call. They get no dollar amount to them what-so-ever. They should be paid, as well as our ambulance corps. because frankly they do more on a daily basis then this cops ever do. I do NOT think CPD should get a raise. Mr. Foley is a cocky SOB when he states that since everyone else is suffering with the economy, why should they? Because when they answer a call, usually not in a timely fashion either, they don’t do much at all. They pretend to care about this community when they really care about their quota and getting their own personal raises.
Percy Marvelous July 10, 2011 at 06:52 AM
Actually Mr. Riss there are paid paramedics in Rockland County. I make every effort to confirm the veracity of my statements. Mr, Riss, with all due respect sir, you are incorrect. Volunteer firemen do indeed have some benefits: http://www.fasny.com/ In reference to Officer Foley you should refrain from ad hominem attacks that are inflammatory in nature.
riss1218 July 10, 2011 at 07:58 PM
Well Mr. Percy, I am not a male, hence the name RISS .. pay attention. Our ambuance corps are volunteer and my boyfriend who is a volunteer firemen, gets some benefits but not a PAID SALARY, again pay attention to what is said. Thank you. And as far as Mr. Foley, goes what concern is it to you what I say about this money hungry SOB. Freedom of speech my friend.
Percy Marvelous July 11, 2011 at 05:36 AM
Ms. Riss, I do so endeavor to pay attention. How would I know that Riss is a feminine name. RISS Reference Information Storage System (HP) RISS Regional Information Sharing System RISS Rhode Island Soft Systems (software company) RISS Real-Time IR/EO Scene Simulator RISS Revised Injury Severity Score If your boyfriend would like to be a paid firefighter there are several municipalities that pay their firefighters. I had picked up the idea that firefighters were volunteers early in the conversation. Ms. Riss referring to Officer Foley as an SOB reflects badly on your attempts to engage in civil discourse. You certainly have a right to speak your mind but ad hominem attacks appeal to the basest parts of our nature. Using profanity also reflects poorly upon a keen intellect.

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